From the Headlines

From world can't wait

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

From world can't wait
DC State of Emergency protest (early rush report)





At 8PM, with the glowing Capitol dome and the hall of Congress towering like a mountain overhead, and about 500 Representatives and Senators cheering on Bush's sham State of The Union, hundreds of people outside called it a State of Emergency, demanding Bush Step Down. The setting was the west side of the Capitol on a civil war victory monument, rising with life size sculptures of battles and stages on either side under a central statue of Grant. Below that a heroic pulpit streched out with 50 people encirling the speakers throwing their hands and fists out over the crowd below towards the washington monument. The ire of the crowd built with each successive speaker throughout the night as eruptions of chants and calls for Bush to step down grew and organizers worked distributing stacks of flyers and organizer kits to recruit the crowd. At the end of the night, everyonee left with a stack of flyers.



A group of the Georgetown Law School students that turned their back in protest during Attorney General Gonzales' speech last week were among those holding the banner from the stage and reading from "the Call". Reverand Debora Lake demanded the crowd and all Americans stand up and fight. The audience was welded into a unified force by of Reverand Lennox Yearwood; Chairman of the Hip-Hop Caucus as he sustained a chanting of Bush Step down with a running political improv on top reaching an incredible height when he lept up on the banister of the pulpit to extol the crowd to take their commitment higher and higher. Clyde Young of the Revolutionary Communist speaking tour finished up with a powerful speech. Also attending were members of the DC Anti-War Network, IAC, moveon, the Progressive Democrats of America and several legal observers from the National Layers Guild.



As Bush's hated political speech got started, strong political poetry and music began with Gustov from the DC Guerrilla Poets rendition of the State of The Union speech substituting the facts and mocking Bush, followed by a deep political medley by a pianist/singer and the rhythm workers collective culminating in a funky jam led by Jazz saxophonist Herb Smith rising up into the "drown out's" with the crowd joining in with a vat array of noise makers roaring but pervading the din was a pounding chant of Bush Step down lasting over 20 minutes with fists pounding the air and sticks being jabbed at the giant plasma screen set out to view the speech.



At the end of the night, a report came back that Cindy Sheehan had been invited into the State of the Union gallery, wore a T-shirt saying the number of people dead in Iraq and was arrested for it. The crowd was angry and 175 people marched off to the police station where she was held to protest the outrageous arrest. This crowd was stopped by police on the way as Bush's motercade passed by. The protesters chanted for police: "turn around and do your job, turn around and arrest Bush". When they got to the station, the sister of Cindy Sheehan was there giving a press conference. The agitated police began to shove people across the street behind a police line. AThe police shoved a megaphone into a protester's face, and banged her in the head drawing blood. 2 protesters yelled at the police in anger for this brutality, and the police subsequently grabbed and dragged them over the police line, pulled them to the ground, and began to kick them. One young woman was kicked in the head and wounded severely enough to require medical treatment, but will recover. The other was arrested and charged with crossing police lines and held for the night. Following that, one young protester told 4 African American police there; "You are the same people that shot protesters in the civil rights movement. "

updated 8 years ago